Robert Smart

When a boy, Robert Smart listened to the radio serial of The Gay Dolphin Adventure. Each week he would hurry home to listen to the next episode on Children's Hour.
All went well for more than a month then the inevitable happened. He missed the broadcast. It was the final episode. The Mortons and Jon and Penny were left stranded . . .
Determined to find out how the story resolved itself, Robert hunted out the Lone Pine books and there discovered not only the satisfactory resolution of the adventure in Rye, but he also discovered Shropshire.

1999 edn cover. Click to enlarge
the Lone Pine Shropshire booklet c.1959
photographs by Robert Smart
He wrote to Malcolm Saville, and that started a lifetime's affection for the books and for the Lone Pine country.

He and his wife moved to Shropshire and lived for many years by the Long Mynd exploring every inch of the hills around. By the late 1950s they had photographed most of the locations described in the books and, wanting to share them, sent copies to Malcolm Saville. The result was the small eight page booklet entitled Lone Pine Country which was sent out to members of the Lone Pine Club in about 1960.
(To examine the booklet click here.)

Shropshire is a beautiful county and he helped thousands to explore it properly through his book Church Stretton & South Shropshire Walks. More than forty thousand had been sold before the 1999 edition was published.
Following the formation of the Society he revised his walks book and included several specifically associated with Saville and his books.

He contributed regularly to the Society's magazine with articles on walks in other parts of England associated with Malcolm Saville. He also provided some on more conjectural themes, eg 'The Hunt for the Real Mr Morton'.

Another of his books, one I haven't seen, but one maybe 'more in my line' is the temptingly titled Short Pub Walks: Shropshire.

Robert died in January 2011.

This page is part of the Malcolm Saville Centenary Website. To enter this site by the front door, click here.
Illustrations copyright the respective Publishers
Text copyright John Allsup
Last updated February 2011
Created Aug 2003